Another month, another round of new openings. While we're not entirely sure at the moment which restaurants are going to reopen or shut their doors for good at the end of this fiasco (some are worryingly quiet), we do know there's still plenty of activity going on out there, and this lot are keeping our spirits high.
We've been dying to see what Mister S ex-head chef Daniel Hannigan was going to do next, and now we know. He's set up Treehouse Treats, a coffee and dessert truck, with fellow industry pals David Keane and Luke Murphy. Their airsteam has pitched up in Knocknashee Estate in Goats Town, and they say they're aiming to bring a restaurant standard to their food, which is maybe surprisingly focused on dessert. Chocolate and whipped caramel tarts, vanilla cheesecake with lemon curd and hazelnut choux buns (see, told you) are all on the menu, as well as duck doughnuts with rhubarb hoisin - yes, the perfect marriage of sweet and savoury. Coffee is from Red Eye, and soon they're starting a click and collect for whole desserts. Treehouse Teats is open seven days a week from 08:00 - 16:00 Monday - Friday and 10:00 - 18:00 Saturday and Sunday.
Bao Bun Street Food, Aungier Street
The bao wars are officially on as Aungier Street's third bao restaurant has just opened its doors. Bao Bun Street Food (joining Big Fan Bao and Bao House on what will now will called 'Bao Street') already have two locations in Belfast but this is their first foray down south. Owner by a Belfast restaurateur, they decided to expand to Dublin due to their success in take-away and delivery during the pandemic, and because some of the management team have lived here and know the city.
They say it's a Taiwanese street food restaurant serving "fresh food fast", and the menu works like this: choose a base (bao bun, fries, rice or salad), choose a protein (chicken, beef, pork, tofu and more) and choose a combo - we're feeling the 'Hot' with kimchi, sriracha, Asian slaw and ponzu chillis, as well as the 'House' with Sichuan, pickled carrot & daikon, Asian slaw & crispy shallots. There's also bao burgers with crispy chicken, char siu pork, halloumi or tofu, as well as pho, dressed fries, and ice-cream bao buns - coming to a '5 Things We Want To Eat' near you soon. They're vegan, allergen and family friendly, open seven days a week and will be BYO when they reopen. Bring on the bao.
A Dó Coffee To Go, Malahide
A Dó Coffee To Go appeared a few weeks ago fully formed in a former nail salon on Malahide's New Street, selling coffee, vegan pastries, potato curry, a couple of sandwiches and little else. We love places doing a couple of things really well and are happy to report that's the case here. Locals Krishna Padayachee and John Quinn are the guys behind it, but it's Krishna's sister Anna Maria who's been brought in to cook their father's recipes. The Durban potato curry box comes with paratha, red cabbage slaw, green chutney and yoghurt dip and is going to have us coming back again and again - it also comes in sandwich form for maximum carb on carb. There's also a chicken sandwich and they plan to expand the menu in the coming week. They're open from 08:30 - 17:00 Monday - Friday and 10:00 - 17:00 at the weekends, and you can check them out on Instagram here.